Brad Jones dismisses criticism of Liverpool goalkeeper Jose Reina

 

Liverpool goalkeeper Brad Jones has dismissed criticism of team-mate Jose Reina's form and insists he has no worries about the Spain international's form.

The 30-year-old has, by his own high standards, had a poor last 18 months with mistakes last season being followed by errors already in the current campaign against Manchester City, Hearts and Arsenal.

But Jones, who is set to take over in goal as Liverpool begin their defence of the League Cup at West Brom tomorrow, stressed that did not mean Reina had become a bad keeper.

"You don't get to the top, which is where he has been for the last five or six years, if you are no good - it is simple as that - and you don't stay there," said the Australia international.

"Whether he has made the odd mistake here or there it is easy for people to jump on a goalkeeper and criticise.

"I don't think anyone has any doubt about Pepe. I don't think he has any doubt either.

"He has been at the top since he was 17, starting playing at Barcelona, so I wouldn't be worried if it was me and I don't think he is too worried about himself."

Critics have pointed to the lack of competition for a regular first-team spot - Reina has made 363 appearances and been a virtual ever-present having signed from Villarreal in the summer of 2005 - for the Spaniard's recent mishaps.

That has been the case for the last couple of years but now Jones has regained the back-up spot having been frozen out by former manager Kenny Dalglish he is confident he can push his team-mate all the way.

And in no way does he take any satisfaction or encouragement from Reina's mistakes.

"You see at some clubs where it doesn't really work and I've seen it a few times over the years where people fall out and goalkeepers don't talk," he said.

"But there is a mutual respect between the group. We all try to work as hard as we can but at the same time any one of us can play.

"The group we have here is probably the hardest-working I've seen and it can only be good to push each other on.

"Peter Gulacsi is there as well and he works as hard as any of us each day so it is good for all of us to have someone right behind you pushing you on and not to have that big gap where someone knows 'It doesn't really matter what happens, I am going to be playing'.

"I think that is important and the group we have is very good."

Jones was brought to the club by Roy Hodgson in the summer of 2010 only for the manager to be sacked six months later.

He brushes off his time under Dalglish, who sent him out on loan to Derby, but admits he was unhappy both professionally and personally.

Jones' son Luca died in November 2011 after a long battle with leukaemia and the six-year old's illness had an undoubted effect during that time.

"It feels like a totally new start, starting with a clean slate," said the 30-year-old.

"I have got to a point where, professionally, I have to move on and I have less things to worry about this season.

"With a new manager coming in you had to prove yourself all over again and it is something which I feel has gone well.

"The new manager involves me a lot more - obviously it was difficult last year - and I'm hoping the manager has been happy with the way things have gone and the way I have trained and played in the few games.

"I feel I am in the best place possible to perform to my best - whether or not I can challenge Pepe all I can do it my best.

"For me personally I have always tried to train my hardest and do my best but there was a difficult time when other things were getting in the way and football took a back seat.

"But I think now I am probably training the best I have done for the last few years and if I get opportunities I will be looking to take them.

Liverpool have confirmed academy technical director Pep Segura, who joined in 2009, and head of fitness and conditioning Darren Burgess, who moved to Melwood a year later, have left the club.

PA

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
Katie Hopkins appearing on 'This Morning' after she purposefully put on 4 stone.
peopleKatie Hopkins breaks down in tears over weight gain challenge
Life and Style
fashionModel of the moment shoots for first time with catwalk veteran
Life and Style
fashionAngelina Jolie's wedding dressed revealed
Sport
Alexis Sanchez, Radamel Falcao, Diego Costa and Mario Balotelli
footballRadamel Falcao and Diego Costa head record £835m influx
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Madame Vastra and Jenny Flint kiss in Doctor Who episode 'Deep Breath'
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Olivia Colman topped the list of the 30 most influential females in broadcasting
tv
Life and Style
techIf those brochure kitchens look a little too perfect to be true, well, that’s probably because they are
Arts and Entertainment
Danish director Lars von Trier
tvEnglish-language series with 'huge' international cast set for 2016
Life and Style
tech
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering